Within the opening strokes of album opener Petals open when reached by sunlight, with its uplifting strings and dreamy movements, it is clear that The Crimea know all about ambition and scope.
With work on Square Moon having started five years ago, and the band admitting themselves that its birth has been troublesome, it is only fitting that their third album should be as grand as it is.
Both elevating and poignant, with a breadth of sound and imagery of Sigur Rós proportions, Square Moon spans an hour and a half and can only be called their classic album. It is epic in every sense of the word.
Much like our review of Little Radar recently, The Crimea are also leading the revolution of thinking man’s indie. They feature familiar indie vocal stylings with a more innovative and outgoing musicianship, which should prevent the usual rot setting in after a couple of albums in the indie genre.
It’s hard to choose highlights when there are so many good tunes. Indeed, it’s almost a symphony, with every song being incredibly varied, but linking together perfectly to such an extent that if one was missing, you would notice. Jellyfish is probably the closest to a commercial tune on the album and Last plane out of Saigon is also a belter but the truth is that there isn’t a bad tune on this record.
Another highlight is the poetic nature of the song titles like Listen to seashells they know everything, If I see my reflection one more time and Black belt in breaking hearts. Try finding another album with song titles as original as these.
There are only so many adjectives I can use to describe this album but beautiful, contemplative and elegant are at the top. Imagine Tom Waits in a good mood writing songs with Sigur Rós, Nick Cave & Warren Ellis and Muse and what you have is some indication of what this album sounds like and how good it is. Square Moon may not be a chartbuster, and it may not sell in the millions, but to those who listen to it, this record will mean the world; and that is perhaps most important of all.
Square Moon is released on the 29th July – grab it as soon as you can.